Pickin’ Up Steam- Work Sessions 2023

Carl sent out this update on the first work session for 2023, held on April 22/23:

WORK SESSION NUMBER 1 FOR 2023 is in the bag!!!

Our first Work Session of 2023 got us off to a good start with eight volunteers showing up… because it has been a few months since the weather took a turn for the worse, last Fall, and because we had some new volunteers, we took a bit of time bringing people up to speed with where we are in the project and what the order of activity will be for the next year. Welcome back to Erik Johnson, returning for his second session, after a long cold winter …. and Scott Green joined us for the first time… Scott brings a wide variety of talents including as an electrician… giving us two with deep electrical talents to help bring our infrastructure up to speed and help get our small machine shop area up and running. Some of our regulars showed up as well, included Ken McCauley from Lock Haven, Bill Simonton from Vienna, VA as well as our local crew, Norm Thomas, Ron and Connie Sitterley. and myself, Carl W.

Work continued on the engine bay mock-up which, when completed, will give us a huge lesson on how exactly we will need to go about assembling the “real” frame, gears and engines. Since we didn’t disassemble the locomotive or any of the components, we haven’t a clue what the gear clearances were originally… and unlike modern assemblies, where you would be mounting everything steel to steel and with the ability to shim to get the proper clearances, the early Climax “A”s have a wooden frame in between the steel and cast-iron components… and the wood shrinks and moves. So each step of the way we are learning valuable lessons and insights for when we begin to assemble the complete frame.

One additional thought is that when the engine is bolted on it will give the viewer a real perspective of just how high the engine sits and where the floor of the cab is in relation to the tracks…. it will be a little higher in the mock-up, but not a whole lot.

The frame under the engine bay is for structural and moving purposes only and has nothing to do with the frame assembly…. the pieces on top of the engine cradle are the same cross-sectional dimension as the actual frame. All of this was also necessary for creating and testing a jig for drilling the compound angle for the engine bay truss-rods also.

Confirmation of all of the frame dimensions is getting closer to being complete. Soon frame pieces will begin to be cut, followed by test assembly.

Some progress was made in preparing our sandblast cabinet for use… adding adequate lighting, changing the electrical switch so that the vacuum will come on with the light, and preparing the installation of a casting on the bottom of the collector to separate some of the sand or glass beads from the material being removed. Here shortly we will have the cabinet in working order and we will be ready to begin primering some of the metal parts in preparation for final paint.

Our next work session will be in a couple of weeks… May 13-14th… mark your calendars and drop a note to us if you are planning to attend. Join us in the restoration of one of the rarest and hardest working locomotive Classes ever built. Donations and contributions are needed and always appreciated. Donations and Gear can be found here.

Here is a list of tentative Work Sessions for the rest of the year…. things change as time goes by, so always keep checking for date changes as you are keeping up to date on our progress. Send any questions to corryrails@gmail.com


(Watch for updates on our Corry RAILS Facebook Page, our website and in Emails)

Session No. Date:

1          April 22-23
2          May 13-14
3          May 27-28 Memorial Day celebrated on Mon. 29th
4          June 10-11 Projects and clean-up and set-up for Open House
4a        June 17 CR Open House with displays. all welcome to participate.
5          June 24-25
6          July 8-9
7          July 22-23 come early, either Friday or real early Saturday and go to the Pioneer Steam and Swap in Saegertown. We will work late Saturday and have a Bar-B-Q afterwards at the shop.
8          Aug. 5-6
9          Aug. 26-27
10        Sept. 2-3
11        Sept. 16-17
12        Oct. 14-15
13        Oct. 28-29
14        Nov. 11-12
Sessions usually start at 8:30 Saturday till 5:00 or 5:30… and Sunday morning 8:30 to noon. Lunch provided. Some volunteers manage to come in early on Friday and spend some time in the shop then, as well

Corry RAILS Restoration shop located at 132 Mead Ave., Corry, PA 16407

See photos on our Facebook page – Corry RAILS

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